Local courthouses have become the latest battleground in the federal government’s attempt to co-opt local criminal justice systems for immigration enforcement. The 15th-century doctrine of common-law privilege from arrest could be a useful precedent in their defense, says a University of Denver law professor.
The deaths of 10 Latinos trapped in an 18-wheeler in San Antonio cast a light on the use of big rigs in immigrant smuggling. But a Border Patrol agent says, “It has been going on certainly throughout the entire 30 years that I’ve been doing this.”
Staffing increases and technological improvements by the U.S. Border Patrol have helped reduce illegal immigration along the southwestern border in recent years. Yet hundreds continue to die annually during desperate bids to reach the U.S.
The attorney general says coveted federal grants will be withheld from cities unless they give federal immigration authorities access to jails and provide advance notice when someone in the country illegally is about to be released. Among the grants at stake: a popular program that provides police money to buy bulletproof vests and body cameras.
Operation Streamline, a fast-track prosecution program that began in Texas in 2005, charges and sentences as many as 70 border-crossers in a single day in Tucson federal court. Each cookie-cutter case occupies a judge for about a minute.
The driver of the Iowa-registered 18-wheeler is expected to face federal human-trafficking charges in Texas after nine illegal immigrants in his rig died amid the searing heat of San Antonio. Advocates say the tough new policies of the Trump administration are pushing illegal immigrants to attempt increasingly dangerous journeys into the U.S.
Rob Krentz, a prominent Arizona rancher, was found shot to death 30 miles from the Mexican border in 2010, and the case was used to justify the state’s harsh immigration laws. But seven years later, it is far from certain that his killer was in the U.S. illegally.